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Drug treatment centres in Punjab register 40 addicts in two days

As per the health department data, 13 patients have been registered in Moga, 12 in Tarn Taran and 15 in Amritsar district

punjab Updated: Oct 29, 2017 13:04 IST
Anil Sharma
Anil Sharma
Tarn Taran’s rehabilitation centre at Tharu village where an OOAT centre has been opened.(HT Photo)

As many as 40 opioid (heroin, smack, brown sugar, opium, poppy husk) dependents have been registered in the newly inaugurated 26 Outpatient Opioid Assisted Treatment (OOAT) centres of Punjab in last two days, said health department officials.The centres were opened in Tarn Taran, Amritsar and Moga districts of the state.

As per the health department data, 13 patients have been registered in Moga, 12 in Tarn Taran and 15 in Amritsar district. The officers said, “We are expecting the figure to cross 200 next week.”

Anti-drug special task force (STF) and the state health department had launched a pilot project with these centres,similar to opioid substitution therapy (OST), started in Tarn Taran, Amritsar and Moga districts on Thursday.

The project will soon be extended to nine central jails, rehabilitation centres, to treat drug addicted inmates, besides taking it to 200 community health centres (CHCs) of Punjab.

As per sources, all CHCs doctors are undergoing training in Amritsar Government Medical college. However, the training of the central jail medical staffs completed in September.

Registered patients can take medicine from any OOAT centre

The department officials said, “We have created a special software for online registration of patients,” said Tarn Taran medical officer Dr Paramjit Singh.

“We have given patients the unique identification codes. The patients by using the same computer generated code can get daily dose from any OOAT centre,” he said.

Dr Ranbir Singh Rana, in-charge of the Tarn Taran facility said, “A patient has to visit the centre for medicine as there is no provision of home delivery. The patient will have to take the medicine in presence of a doctor.”

Under the OOAT project, a dose of buprenorphine (an opioid partial agonist) will be given to the patients and it will take around 2 years to cure the patient, he said. A specially trained staff of four members—a medical officer, a staff nurse, a counsellor and a data entry operator—has been deputed in all the centres.

Free treatment

Addicts can get enrolled for the treatment for free.The medical officer conducts urine screening to check the addiction of the patients and if the results are positive, the DEO will register the patient.

First Published: Oct 29, 2017 13:04 IST